Estate Tax on the Radio

Talk Radio MicrophoneEstate Tax on the Radio

Below are radio news reports on the estate tax, featuring commentary from UFE staffers Mike Lapham and Lee Farris, and our partners, including Bill Gates, Sr., Vanguard founder John C. Bogle, and SEIU Secretary/Treasurer Anna Burger.

These reports have been widely broadcasted in the key battleground states of Maine, Washington and Montana, as well as the and surrounding regions.



December 17, 2009

"Service Employees International Union (SEIU) Secretary-Treasurer Anna Burger says the tax affects very few estates, and the current terms are generous. Burger noted that a wealthy family with two children can pass on $3.5 million to each child tax-free. She puts that in perspective for the more than 99 percent of Americans who are not affected by the estate tax.

'That means that each child will receive more tax-free than the average worker in America would earn in two lifetimes. And that worker will be paying taxes on their earnings.'"

Listen to our 12/17/09 Maine radio story on Public News Service.

November 30, 2009

"With so many big-ticket items on the table, such as health-care reform and climate policy, it's easy for an issue like the estate tax to get lost in the shuffle. That's the tax paid on the estates of multi-millionaires when they die. But the devil is in the details, says Mike Lapham of United for a Fair Economy, a Boston-based nonprofit group. He says several powerful groups have been working to repeal the estate tax for quite some time and, according to Lapham, one of the biggest misconceptions about the tax such groups have perpetuated is that it affects everyone."

Listen to our 11/30/09 Maine radio story on Public News Service.


December 18, 2009

"A familiar name here in Washington, Bill Gates, Sr., says the estate tax is only fair. He believes the "richest of the rich" are in that position because they have benefitted from living in the U.S., where taxpayers fund more than $90 billion a year worth of research and technology.

'Clearly, the largest and most generous venture capitalist in the universe is Uncle Sam. And it's clear that the folks who have become wealthy because of significant social investments did not do it alone.'"

Listen to our 12/18/09 Washington radio story on Public News Service.

November 30, 2009

"They say you can't take it with you and, in December, Congress must decide how much estates should be taxed when someone dies. The federal estate tax expires at the end of this year.

It doesn't affect most people - only one in a hundred is wealthy enough for their estate to be taxed - but some of the super-rich are lobbying to eliminate it. Groups such as United for a Fair Economy (UFE) disagree; its Responsible Wealth Director, Mike Lapham, points out that the tax averages 17 percent of a multimillion dollar estate, and he believes paying it is the right thing to do."

Listen to our 11/30/09 Washington radio story on Public News Service.


December 17, 2009

"Senate Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus has called for keeping the estate tax in place, and he is being echoed by some of the richest families in the country this week, including Bill Gates, Sr. The Senate may vote Friday on closing the one-year gap in the tax that is looming for next year.

John Bogle, founder and retired CEO of The Vanguard Group and one of the "richest of the rich," is pulling for extending the tax for next year and beyond. Bogle explains that the way tax law works, most of his wealth has not yet been taxed, and it won't be taxed until his death. He also says he resents the fact that a few rich families are fighting the tax.

"For us, who owe these taxes, to think that we don't want to pay our fair share for the cost of running this nation, when our young citizens are dying in wars out there trying to protect democracy, seems to me quite outrageous."

Listen to our 12/17/09 Montana radio story on Public News Service.

November 30, 2009

"Death and taxes are on the docket for Congress in the next few weeks. The lawmakers need to bridge the one-year gap in the estate tax looming next year, and possibly decide what the tax should look like in the future. Montana Senator and Finance Committee Chair Max Baucus has called for keeping the tax, although some want to eliminate it.

Lee Farris, senior organizer with the non-profit group United for a Fair Economy, points out that the anti-estate tax campaign has been funded by a few super-wealthy families, including those who own Gallo Wines and Wal-Mart. She puts it in perspective under the current law. 'Married couples can pass on $7 million tax-free. If a person won $7 million in the lottery and then complained that it wasn't enough, I think we'd all call it ridiculous.'"

Listen to our 11/30/09 Montana radio story on Public News Service.

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